The importance of pollinators – such as bees, butterflies, moths, and hummingbirds – is becoming more widely known. Bees pollinate approximately 35 percent of the food we eat. Pollinators as a whole are worth about $15 billion to the agricultural industry.
Honey bees are important, yet they are declining. Besides issues such as habitat loss and disease, pest management methods can also contribute to population loss. Pesticides used to kill insects, plant pathogens and weeds can leave residues that kill bees and other natural enemies. Residues can linger in pollen and nectar, and pollinators moving into an area after...
San Joaquin Valley farmers are facing an unusually high pest population this spring due to the milder than normal winter, and rapidly warming spring conditions, says a UC Agriculture and Natural Resources entomologist.
“I've never seen this happen before in the 25 years I've been working on citrus entomology,” said Beth Grafton-Cardwell, UC ANR Cooperative Extension citrus entomology specialist. “One pest control adviser who's been in the business for 50 years told me this is the first time he's seen weather conditions this extreme.”
In a normal valley winter, temperatures dip into the low 20-30s for weeks at a time. But...
- Author: Brook Gamble
Over a dozen UC Agriculture and Natural Resources (UC ANR) California Naturalists, fire ecology experts, wildlife biologists, resource managers, educators, and artists met at UC Berkeley's Blodgett Forest Research Station and the adjacent El Dorado National Forest April 23 and 24, and not one of them complained about the much-needed deluge of rain and intermittent hail that soaked the group. The weekend's ambitious goal? To dive deeply into a
With California's continuing drought, many trees are showing signs of water stress. UC Agriculture and Natural Resources tree experts have been hearing from homeowners who are concerned about the effects of the drought on valued oak trees in their landscapes.
“Concern has grown since severely stressed and even dead oak trees are becoming common observances,” said William Tietje, UCANR Cooperative Extension area natural resources specialist based inSan Luis Obispo County. “People are asking, ‘What can I do to help?'”
“Three options come to mind: deep water, mulch or do nothing,” said Tietje. Below, he and Steven Swain, UCANR...
- Author: Jeannette E. Warnert
Olive farmers in southern Italy are dealing with a serious outbreak of olive quick decline syndrome, a new disease with symptoms that include leaf scorching, twig and branch dieback and, ultimately, tree death. In October 2013, the plant pathogen Xyllela fastidiosa was found for the first time ever in Europe and appears to be associated with the disease.
This has California researchers worried and baffled. The bacterium Xyllela fastidiosa has been present in the state for more than 100 years and can sometimes be found in olive trees. Trials conducted by USDA and UC researchers from 2008 to 2011 showed that strains of the bacterium found in California did not cause disease in olives.